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Amazon Calls Off Purchase Of iRobot

Yolowire - Mon Jan 29, 10:37AM CST

%Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) has announced that it is terminating its planned acquisition of robot vacuum maker %iRobot (NASDAQ: IRBT) due to opposition among regulators in Europe.

Antitrust regulators in the European Union (EU) vehemently opposed Amazon’s $1.4 billion U.S. purchase of iRobot due to fears it could lead to an erosion of consumer privacy and market concentration.

It was widely reported that regulators for the European Commission planned to block the deal from proceeding over concerns that Amazon may thwart iRobot rivals on its online marketplace, especially in France, Germany, Italy, and Spain.

Amazon announced the iRobot acquisition in August 2022. The e-commerce giant was hoping to expand its stable of smart home devices that already includes Alexa and Ring.

Competitors of Amazon had opposed the deal, saying it would strengthen Amazon's already powerful position in smart home devices.

In a written statement, Amazon said that, despite canceling the iRobot deal, it still believes “in the future of consumer robotics in the home…”

Following news of the deal’s termination, iRobot announced a significant restructuring plan to reduce costs, saying it would cut 31% of its workforce, or 350 jobs.

iRobot also said that Colin Angle has stepped down as the company’s chief executive officer (CEO).

The stock of iRobot is down nearly 20% on news of the Amazon acquisition being terminated. Amazon’s stock is up 0.38% on the news.

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